Some Windows 10/11 users are complaining that instead of sleeping, their laptops shut down every time they close the lid. This, they say, leads to the loss of unsaved work and sessions. One user even threatens to abandon Windows out of frustration entirely.
The issue of laptops shutting down instead of going to sleep was first reported in 2015 on Windows 8 devices. But it seems that the same fatal issue has made it to Windows 10/11, despite Microsoft’s promise that Windows 10/11 would be a better operating system.
Since most of the complaints about this issue are to be found in Microsoft’s and Windows forums, the solutions offered are, if anything, scanty and not well presented. This article summarizes some of the best solutions and also incorporates solutions from other Windows experts.
How to Fix the Windows 10/11 Closing Applications upon Sleep or Out Of Sleep Mode
The first course of action to troubleshoot any PC issue should be to clean your computer with a reliable PC repair tool such as Outbyte PC Repair. Cleaning your laptop prepares it for other interventions because the process gets rid of Windows errors, malware, deletes junk files, and repairs missing registry entries.
Pro Tip: Run a dedicated PC optimization tool to get rid of incorrect settings, junk files, harmful apps, and security threats that can cause system issues or slow performance.
1. Install Display Drivers
Display drivers enable the communication between the OS, and the graphics architecture of your PC, and the display itself. When the drivers are misconfigured, corrupt, or outdated, they can cause all sorts of problem in a PC, including the unexpected shutting down of your laptop.
To update the display drivers of your PC, take the following steps:
- Right-click on the Windows Start menu and choose System.
- Under System, scroll to find your computer’s model information.
- Go to the manufacturer’s site and search for the latest display drivers. Download and install them on your computer.
If this procedure seems tedious, there is an easier way to update the drivers on your computer that you should try. Here is how:
- Type “device manager” on the Windows search box.
- From the list of devices that appear, click on Display adapters to reveal devices such as graphics card. Right-click on them and choose Update driver.
To be on the safe side, update all the drivers of your PC as this will boost the overall performance of your computer.
If you don’t want the hustle of manually updating the drivers on your PC, then you can choose to download a driver updater that will scan your system and make all updates.
2. Tweak the Power and Sleep Settings of Your PC
Microsoft suggests that tweaking the display settings of your computer will help prevent your laptop from shutting down after the lid has been closed. The display settings control the sleep and wake behavior of your laptop, and they can be accessed by typing “power and sleep settings” on the Windows search box.
One way to solve the “sleep mode closes all apps on Windows 10/11” issue of your computer is to go to the Sleep settings, scroll through the options, and choose Never. With this setting, your computer will never go to sleep even after closing the lid. This will, of course, drain your battery.
Alternatively, you can set the sleep option to a few hours (5 hours maximum), or several minutes depending on your preferences.
The Screen settings will give you the most power to control the sleep and wakefulness states of your computer. If you set Screen settings to Never turn off, your laptop will never sleep. And just as with the Sleep settings, you can choose to have the screen shut off after a few minutes or hours.
The above-described settings and procedures are general and apply to both desktops and laptops. Those for laptops are a bit different because laptops have a lid and need to conserve power when on battery.
The following are the steps to take with a laptop:
- Into the Windows search box, type “power settings.”
- Under the Related settings section, click on Additional power settings.
- On the left side of the Power Options screen, click on the option that says Choose what closing the lid does.
- From here, you can select the behavior you’d like your computer to do after the lid has been closed. The drop-down menu has the following options: Do Nothing, Sleep, Hibernate, and Shutdown.
Make sure that your computer has the right settings. You would want to choose the Sleep option as opposed to Hibernate or Shutdown. But whatever option you choose, make sure to go back to the Sleep and Screen settings and adjust them accordingly to reflect the preferences you have made in the Related settings section.
Some Windows 10/11 users have found success in solving the “all apps close after computer wakes up from sleep” issue by enabling Hybrid Sleep. This sleep setting is a mix of the Hibernate and Sleep options that utilizes the benefits of both of these modes.
It is a very robust setting because, in this mode, the operating system is still able to access both the RAM and the hard drives. In other words, it prevents a complete shutdown of the PC and the subsequent loss of data.
To enable the Hybrid Sleep option on your laptop, take the following steps:
- Type “control panel” into the Windows search box.
- On the Control Panel app, click Power options.
- You will see the power plan that you are currently on, choose Change plan settings.
- On the Change plan settings window, click on Change advanced power settings.
- Under the Sleep category, choose Allow hybrid sleep. Modify the options as you see fit.
The Power and Sleep settings govern the sleep and wakefulness states of your computer. If these are correctly set, then your laptop won’t go to sleep unexpectedly. Also, a misconfigured, corrupt, or out of date display driver might be to blame for your computer shutting down when you expect it to sleep. Updating your drivers might help solve the problem.
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